72 Dresses (And nothing to wear)

A few weeks ago, Siel asked me how many dresses I have. I didn’t actually know the answer to that offhand, and I couldn’t count them because I was scared of what the answer would be at any given time about 50% of my clothes are packed away in the attic, waiting for the right time of year for them to be worn again. On Friday, that day finally came for the winter clothes, so I prepared myself for the Great Wardrobe Switchover 2011(Winter Edition). While I had all of my clothes out at the same time, I took the opportunity to do a quick count, and..

72 dresses.

(Er, they’re not all shown here, obviously. The summer ones are all in the attic now. Missing them already!)

I dunno, that seems… actually, I have no idea how that seems. I was going to say it seems not too bad (I mean, I’ve collected them – sorry, curated them – over many years, after all, so it’s not like I just ran out and bought 72 dresses one day. Although that would rock. And I DO actually wear them.) but now I come to actually write it down, it occurs to me that my opinion is probably skewed by the fact  that I know people who have a LOT more than that, who make my collection seem small in comparison. Hmmm.

Because I know you all care deeply about this, the 71 dresses are broken down as follows:

21 green dresses

16 black dresses

14 blue dresses

7 grey/silver dresses

6 cream/tan/beige dresses

4 white dresses

2 purple dresses

2 brown dresses

(OK, hands up: how many of you are prepared to admit that you totally added them all up in the hope that I’d miscounted?)

So, 72 dresses, many of them green or black.

The problem with this? Other than that I could really be doing with another closet to hold them all?

I have hardly ANY casual clothes.

Seriously, having systematically destroyed all of my jeans  over the summer, I’m left with 72 dresses and nothing to wear. You think I’m exaggerating, I know. And let’s face it, it wouldn’t be the first time. But I promise, I’m only exaggerating very slightly this time. And I mean, I know dresses can be “casual”. Most of mine, aren’t, though (They pretty much ALL get the “Why are you all dressed up?” reaction, so…), and because I really hate wearing tights, “winter casual” basically means trousers or jeans for me. Up until recently, I was the proud owner of:

The Best Chinos in All the Land: RUINED
Red Jeans: RUINED
Green Jeans: RUINED
Blue jeans: RUINED
Sundry pairs of ancient jeans: only suitable for wearing in the house
Assorted black jeans and trousers: not yet ruined
Leggings & jeggings: don’t really count as “clothes”

So you can see my dilemma: from this point forth, I must either wear dresses, or black trousers. And that’s it. Which is ironic when you consider that one of my most viewed posts, according to the little widget in my sidebar, is this one from years ago, in which I whine like a baby about how I only have causal clothes, and hardly any “dressy” stuff, OMG. I guess that was my “tipping point”. I seem to remember that after that I decided that working from home didn’t have to mean wearing jeans every day, and I apparently set myself the task of buying all the dresses in all the world. Or 72 of them, at least. And because I tend to go too far with stuff with like that (YA think?), now I have exactly the opposite problem. Seriously, I’m sitting here dressed like Audrey Hepburn, not even joking.*

First world problems: I got ’em.

Make me feel better here, people: how many dresses do you have?

*Totally joking.

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  • At last count, 125 – but that was over a month ago, so the total is now closer to 140. Hhhmmm. I don’t own any trousers, though. Or skirts, but still. That number does seem a tad excessive.

    It will definitely increase, however.

    October 3, 2011
      • Well, this is what I tell myself…. as I have two dresses in the post to me, one that arrived last week and is as yet unworn and a new dress pattern on its way to me too! I do wear them all, though 🙂

        October 3, 2011
  • I know you know I’m one of those people.

    I’ve not counted for ages, nor do I plan to, but at a guess I’d put it somewhere around the 200 mark.

    October 3, 2011
      • Moni


        I hope that Sara will comment here, too. I’m really interested in how many dresses she owns…

        October 3, 2011
        • Sara


          I will do a count for you sometime, Moni! I really have no idea, but I’d guess more than 50 and less than 100. Certainly not as many as Gemma – that’s an amazing collection!

          October 5, 2011
  • Rachel


    Wow. I only have 16 dresses and 16 skirts and one pair of jeans. I do declare I need to do some shopping. I shall be using the numbers I have seen posted here as my guide.

    October 3, 2011
  • Ah, now I feel better about my 30+ skirts, thank you! I literally took a breath of relief! I think I need to go shopping…

    October 3, 2011
  • Haha, I think I have about 10 dresses and 15 skirts, but my mum still complains about the amount of clothes I have, can you believe??

    Thanks for mentioning me, btw! I feel honoured 😮
    And 21 green dresses??? We should really stop telling you how good green looks on you, don’t we? 🙂
    It surprised me that you don’t have any red dresses, redheads look great in red too! (Or so they tell me) 🙂

    October 3, 2011
  • Sandy


    I don’t have many dresses…(I’m a bit too busty so they have to be selected carefully) but I must have nearly 40 skirts, which as they’re full ones with 20 panels in (I make them) it makes my wardrobe a bit squished!

    I do take your approach to dresses with shoes though….if people on the internets have loads more than me then that means my collection is comparitively small!! Just have to remember not to mention it to real life people who only seem to have 4 pairs of shoes! *faints*

    Does anyone else sit and watch Gok and feel smug that you’re in the small percentage of women who wear dresses/skirts??? I know I do!! Hehe!

    October 3, 2011
  • 72 dresses? Good effort! You’ve inspired me to count my own. I can’t even hazard a guess as I’m in one of those wardrobe situations where I feel like I have nothing to wear on any given day, but in actuality my wardrobe is bursting at the seams.

    October 3, 2011
  • Hmmmm. No sure. Dresses are obviously my thing BUT I am excellent at culling my collection on a bi-annual basis. I’d hazard a guess that I manage to keep it around 40 or so at any one time xx

    October 3, 2011
    • If you’re ever looking to cull your Bettie Page captain dress, I’ll take that baby off your hands (for a fair price, of course!) x

      October 3, 2011
      • haha you’ll get first dibs should that ever happen 😉

        October 4, 2011
  • I’m a poor student, so my count reaches 16 dresses plus 16 skirts 🙂 I do not wear all of them anymore though – three of the dresses are filed for charity.

    October 3, 2011
  • That’s a really nice collection! I was sure that most of your dresses would be green. And 72 dresses is not so many, in my opinion. Of course you would have to buy some casual clothes for winter too.
    I don’t know how many dresses I own. I have been wearing dresses only for the last 3-4 years, so they can’t be that many. I’m sure that I have more summer dresses than winter ones, cause I get so cold in winter to wear dresses. But I’m going to count them, when I do the switch to my winter clothss too. I’m really curious now.

    October 3, 2011
  • Moni


    *back from counting*

    11 dresses (Woah, I thought it would be less…)
    + one “Dirndl” and one medieval dress
    9 skirts
    (not counting my Square Dance skirts)

    I think that’s a lot regarding the fact that I hardly ever wear skirts at all (because they are impractical at work) and that I only wear dresses when I go to the theater or on similar occasions.
    Some of the dresses and skirts have not been worn in quite some time now, though, and I think of donating them to charity.

    October 3, 2011
  • What a beautiful collection! And I’m so glad someone else calls it a “collection”, makes it seem less frivolous. And I have totally sympathy with your “nothing to wear” plight. I own a mere 2 skirts (both suit skirts) and 2 pairs of jeans. This is wholly because I’m a classic pear shape and dresses suit me more. I do, therefore, turn up overdressed to everything! But I’d sooner be overdressed than underdressed!!!!

    October 3, 2011
  • I’m another one that’s always overdressed- I have about 60 dresses at last count. My biggest dilemma is how to store them in my tiny closet- it means that I can’t do a double hanging rack in any area because the dresses would drag on the ground. Blah! Need a bigger closet! First world problems, indeed… !

    October 3, 2011
  • I’d probably guess I have half of that but I bet if I counted it’d pretty about the same!!


    October 3, 2011
  • I have 61 dresses. Not too bad. Although I have a long way to go to beat Roisin or Gemma. I feel the need to go shopping immediately.

    October 3, 2011
  • I don’t have many at all (14 – only counting ones that actually fit):

    5 black (1 light cotton, 1 heavy, 1 sweater, 1 lace, 1 polka dot)
    3 green/teal (1 solid, 1 paisley, 1 striped)
    1 navy blue (striped)
    1 orange
    1 leopard
    1 white
    1 purple floral
    1 pink (shirt-dress)

    October 4, 2011
  • Dresses are a girls best friend! I love that you own so many- I though I was the only one (I’m scared to count mine)… but I know I have more than enough black ones, they are my weakness. Great post!!

    October 4, 2011
  • Well, following a quick run to the wardrobe I can confirm that I have 54. However a lot of those are way too dressy for day wear. So probably about 30 in day rotation. Which isn’t many when you think that wear I live only it’s so hot that dresses are the best way to stay cool. I need to shop. 🙂

    October 5, 2011
  • Sara


    I just had to comment to say that you have the best wardrobe, and I love everything you wear! I love the way you have your dresses sorted by colour, too 🙂 It’s always interesting to see inside other people’s closets! 21 green dresses – that’s amazing!

    I should count my dresses sometime too, although I’m not sure if I want to know. I only really started ‘collecting’ them a year or two ago, but I do buy a lot of them now (not quite 72 in one day, but I have to admit that I did buy 2 dresses just today. Only because I got paid, though – my usual rate is about 2 a fortnight).

    I agree that dresses should be worn as much as possible, too. I have 4 or 5 that I consider too dressy for every-day wear, and I always feel a bit sorry for those ones.

    October 5, 2011
  • Jeannine


    I’m actually currently away from my closet right now, puppy-sitting for someone, and will probably re-comment later with a number, but, in the meantime, I do remember that about half of the dresses in my closet are the exact same cut, in different prints, which I then wear all summer while people are constantly saying, “Didn’t you wear that yesterday?”

    October 5, 2011
  • Erika (Zamira Cat)


    Reading all of these comments inspired me to do a count – 64 is the number. I am somewhat surprised! I use to be pretty good about rotating those rarely worn dresses out of my closet and would pass them on to friends. However, seeing them on my friends sometimes made me regret my former decision of getting rid of the said dresses. I guess I have started to hang on to them now. I found a few hanging up that I had forgotten I even had. Gotta love dresses though! And Amber, I would say you have a very lovely collection!

    October 6, 2011
  • I used to have 40 and now I’ve been really good and cleansed my wardrobe to 23 which is pretty good

    June 15, 2014
  • Tess


    Maybe it’s time to ‘follow-up’ on this post after 3 good years.

    January 21, 2015